Leatherback Turtle Rescued

Signs the turtle was in distress began Monday when it came ashore at Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park in Collier County.

Volunteers rescue a leatherback turtle weighing almost 800 pounds, found stranded Tuesday on Big Hickory Island in Bonita Springs, a day after its first area appearance, at Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park. The turtle was taken to Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota for treatment. (Valerie Roche/news-press.com)

It is rare to see leatherbacks on the west coast of Florida - although one did nest on Sanibel last summer. Usually, they nest on the east coast.

As it came ashore, it walked up the beach into the sea oats and made motions like it was nesting. Rangers helped her back into the water.

Tuesday around 8 a.m., it was found by park rangers on Big Hickory.

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